Great hope Halep - How far now?

How far will Simona Halep go at the 2014 USO?


  • Total voters
    87

Marius_Hancu

Talk Tennis Guru
Sydney 2019 entry list
  • S. Halep
  • A. Kerber
  • N. Osaka
  • S. Stephens
  • Ka. Pliskova
  • K. Bertens
  • D. Kasatkina
  • A. Sevastova
  • E. Mertens
  • A. Sabalenka
  • A. Barty
  • G. Muguruza
  • A. Kontaveit
  • J. Ostapenko
  • C. Suarez Navarro
  • T. Bacsinszky (protected)
  • D. Cibulkova
  • C. Giorgi
  • L. Tsurenko
  • S.W. Hsieh
 
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aussie

Professional
Barty played excellent, well thought out tennis. When she improves on her unforced error count she will be a top 5 player. Today, Halep was a little below her best but nevertheless it was an excellent match.
 

Harry_Wild

G.O.A.T.
It was an interesting match! Barty play at a high level and Halep was not that match tough...yet and made mistakes on the games. It just a warm up match for Halep and I would not read that much into a single match here. It just a sign that Halep is beatable now.
 

Marius_Hancu

Talk Tennis Guru
2019 AO
Path: Kanepi, Kenin, Venus/Buzarnescu, Serena, Pliskova, Osaka/Svitolina, Kvitova/Kerber/Wozniacki
Extremely tough, but then exciting.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
https://www.wtatennis.com/news/simona-halep-provides-detailed-injury-update
https://www.wtatennis.com/news/cibulkova-outlasts-ailing-halep-wuhan-0

On a 5 match losing streak, whaddup?
Burnout and injury since Aug 2018. Back injury (disk hernia).

Appeared to be burned out after reaching the finals at the Rogers Cup (which she won) and, again, the following week at Cincy. IIRC both venues were hot & humid. Because of her demanding playing style (and physiology?), Simona had always had an issue with brutally hot & humid venues -- like AO 2018 and DC in 2017. Recall that she was hospitalized for dehydration or heat exhaustion after her final match at AO last year. Note that no player has ever won back-to-back titles in Canada & Cincy. Serena, on 4 different occasions has won one but not the other. Simona, twice.

2 days after her final in Cincy, Simona had to pull out the Connecticut Open w/o playing. Still might not have fully recovered the following week for her 1R match at US Open. Significant movement problems in 1R against Cibulkova in Sept in Wuhan. Simona attempted to play at the China Open at the end of Sept. Retired in 1R after only 1 set. Had to pull out of the Kremlin Cup in mid-Oct.

The one set she played at the China Open was the last time she had competed in 2018. Little wonder that she was not on her game or quite match ready against an "on-fire" Barty.
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Marius_Hancu

Talk Tennis Guru
2019 AO

Simona Halep 3R interview
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  • Third round def. Venus Williams 6-2 6-3

Q. Talk about what your mindset was going into the match and tactically what you wanted to do out there.
SIMONA HALEP: Well, I thought about the match in Montreal. I knew that she was injured back then, but I knew I have to play similar tennis, fast, quick, to stay very close to the baseline, which I did great today. Also to serve well because she returns pretty strong. She stays into the court and takes the return very fast.
Yeah, I think I played smart, aggressive, and also I moved her a lot, so I think that's why I could win.

Q. Venus said you played flawless, you served well. From a strategic side, without having a coach in place, is this all your thinking or are you talking to people from the outside?
SIMONA HALEP: As I said, Darren is next to me these days. I don't have a coach. He cannot come to my box because he's not my coach officially. But he's helping me. I really appreciate that.
I have the Fed Cup captain here, one more coach from Romania. I have a lot of support. I don't feel alone. It's a good atmosphere in my team. I really take it as a big positive.

Q. We could see on our screens before the match you were talking to Laura before the match, very relaxed. Is this normal for you?
SIMONA HALEP: Not really. Not really very normal. As I said, many things changed in myself, inside myself. I try just to enjoy more the life, to be more relaxed, which I'm doing pretty well, and I feel much better.
I think I will keep doing it.

Q. Were you like this earlier in the week or did the tough wins give you that?
SIMONA HALEP: No, I've been like this since I finished the season last year. I changed some things in my head and I feel good.

Q. The next match, what do you think will be key for you against Serena? How much of what you were just talking about, the mental side of things, will be important?
SIMONA HALEP: Well, it's a bit different because I only beat her once in my life, so I cannot say much about this match. Just that it's going to be huge challenge for me. It's always great to play against Serena because every time I have to learn something from the match.
I think I have to play similar, if I can. I have to be smart, aggressive. I have to move her and give my best. I will not super think about this because is nothing to think, just go there and play natural and with confidence.

Q. Can you remember the circumstances of your win over Serena? Can you remember what you didn't do right when you lost?
SIMONA HALEP: Yeah, I remember those matches. First one I played like today: fast and aggressive. In the final at 3-1 there in first set, I lost the confidence and I went very back, I went very far on the court, and I couldn't touch the ball any more. She was dominating the match.
I played many times against her. We had also tough matches together. So it's going to be just a huge match for me. I will not put pressure on myself. There's a good chance for me to play my best tennis and to feel good on court.

Q. Is she an intimidating opponent?
SIMONA HALEP: She was when I was younger, but now I don't feel intimidated any more. I have huge respect for her because she's a great champion, but she's just an opponent next round.

Q. People talk about Serena still being maybe the best player on tour. She doesn't play a full schedule. You're obviously officially the best player in the world at No. 1. How do you measure where Serena would rank in an imagine ranking?
SIMONA HALEP: In my opinion, to be No. 1 in the world and to be the best player in the world, it's a little bit different. In this moment, I'm No. 1 in the world, so I will take that. I feel like I have been there many months, many weeks.
But for sure she's the best player in the world because she won so many Grand Slams. She's been a lot on No. 1. I cannot compare my results to her. But in this moment, I am confident that I am in this position, and I'm positive about it.

Q. We haven't seen much of Serena, only eight tournaments since she came back. Do you think she's vulnerable or more beatable since having the layoff? Do you think playing full-time gives you an advantage?
SIMONA HALEP: For sure is not easy if you play less tournaments. But she has enough experience to handle every moment of the matches. So I don't believe she's vulnerable because of that.
I didn't play against her since she came back, so I don't know what to say about this. She's a very tough opponent every time.

Q. What would it mean to beat the Williams sisters back-to-back at a major?
SIMONA HALEP: I will not think about that. Let's wait the match. If it will happen, then I can say something.

Q. You said you are not intimidated by Serena any more.
SIMONA HALEP: I lost too many times against her, so I got used to it (smiling). No, I'm joking.

Q. Is that because you know you are good enough to compete against her or simply you are used to her kind of pressure?
SIMONA HALEP: Yeah, I'm used to this pressure. I'm used to face her. I'm in a good position. I feel confident. I played very well today. But doesn't mean is going to be the same against her.
I will wait. I will focus on myself. Is the most important thing. I will see what is going to happen on court.

Q. What does it feel like for you, especially at a Grand Slam, to play them back-to-back?
SIMONA HALEP: Definitely is the toughest draw I've ever had. Second, like I said many times, it's a huge challenge. Every time I face the sisters is a big challenge for me. I just want to try to play my best tennis because I have nothing to lose against them.

Q. You've worn three different versions of your kit. Do you enjoy the fact that you can wear different versions?
SIMONA HALEP: Yeah, I enjoy. I have no reason. I just wanted to change. I had from Nike three versions. Now I will think the fourth match that I will play.

Q. Why do you have nothing to lose against Serena?
SIMONA HALEP: Because, as I said, she's a great champion. She's a very tough opponent. I have a huge respect for her. It's always nice to face her because I have to learn
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Marius_Hancu

Talk Tennis Guru
Romanian FedCup team (Simona Halep, Mihaela Buzarnescu, Irina Begu, Monica Niculescu si Ana Bogdan) to play Czech in Ostrava. No Kvitova, but Karolina Pliskova, Katerina Siniakova, Barbora Krejcikova, Marketa Vondrousova might be enough.
 
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Marius_Hancu

Talk Tennis Guru
She seems to have signed the Belgian Thierry Van Cleemput to a permanent (seemingly 200,000 Euro/year contract, down from $1Mil to Cahill but up from 100,000 Euro/year to Pavel) . He coached Olivier Rochus (1993 - 1997), Steve Darcis (2011 - 2012) and David Goffin (2014 - 2019).

I had suggested Becker, Edberg, Henin, Carlos Rodriguez, Henin's coach. Close and perhaps influential call :cool:, as Henin seems to have recommended Van Cleemput in turn to Virginia Ruzici, while Becker is still quoted to become part of Halep's team.

We'll see ...
 
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SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Simona likely to get back up to #2 in the next 2-3 has weeks. Petra has a lot ore points to defend in the next 2 & 3 weeks than Simona. And Halep is playing Doha next week while, it appears, the Kvitova is not playing next week. OTOH, is will be a while before anyone has a shot of overtaking Osaka.
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Naomi out of Doha with injury also.
Was not even aware that she had planned to play Doha. But it appears that you're correct. She pulled out with a back injury. Wonder if it will keep her from playing Dubai the following week. Won't have any effect on her #1 standing in either case. Doesn't have very many points to defend in the next few weeks. Certainly not as many points as Petra (or Simona).
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Fintft

Legend
Congrats to Halep for her easy win in Dolha while Pliskova's legs still hurt (according to herself apparently)!
 

SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Simona likely to get back up to #2 in the next 2-3 has weeks. Petra has a lot ore points to defend in the next 2 & 3 weeks than Simona. And Halep is playing Doha next week while, it appears, the Kvitova is not playing next week. OTOH, is will be a while before anyone has a shot of overtaking Osaka.
Looks like it didn't take much more than a week. Live ranking already has Halep back at #2 (next Mon in the official WTA rankings). Kvitova is losing quite a few points. Drops from #2 down to #4. Sloane Stephens will be the new #3 (even if Svitolina wins Doha).
 

Fintft

Legend
Too bad that:

a) Maertens cheated by faking an injury when Simona was on a roll

b) Simona's got exhausted in the end, after all the effort in Fed Cup over Cehia
 

Marius_Hancu

Talk Tennis Guru
Interesting. So, what is next? Her relationship with Cahill will be a hard act to follow. Hope that Van Cleemput, didn't quit his partnership with Goffin just to coach Halep.
She says she's found she's fine without a coach for now.
She will try to use the trove of advice and experience she got from Cahill and to think for herself.

See also in French:
Thierry Van Cleemput: "Je n'ai pas les armes pour aider Halep"
Basically, "I do not have the weapons to influence what she does on court."
 
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SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
She says she's found she's fine without a coach for now.
She will try to use the trove of advice and experience she got from Cahill and to think for herself.

See also in French:
Thierry Van Cleemput: "Je n'ai pas les armes pour aider Halep"
Basically, "I do not have the weapons to influence what she does on court."
Seems like English was part of the problem between Van Cleemput & Halep.
A bit more than that tho. Translation of what Van Cleemput had to say:

Belgian Thierry Van Cleemput , former coach of David Goffin, reacted in the press in his home country after announcing that he would not continue collaborating with Simona Halep :

"It all went well in Doha, & she is a great champion & a top person. But it does not match my style. I could not help her. I asked for a probation period in Bucharest & another trial period during the Doha tournament.Everything went well, but, as I said, I could not help her, & I'm not afraid to say that. I can not offer things I do not know or I do not know how to do them. "

Thierry Van Cleemput: "It was a mistake to continue, we were hard to communicate, English was a problem"

Can't really vouch for the quality of the translation. Perhaps you Romanian speakers can improve on it.
https://www.gsp.ro/sporturi/tenis/t...-ajut-era-o-greseala-sa-continuam-560253.html
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SystemicAnomaly

Talk Tennis Guru
Clearly Halep will be back with Cahill 2020. No one want to coach her that short.
Is it clear? Was not aware that this is a certainty. Also, sometimes players bring in specialists for a limited time. Hasn't Novak and Rafa done this with serving specialists? Perhaps Simona could bring in someone for her 2nd serve.
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